How do probiotics work??
1) Along the gastrointestinal tract (GIT), probiotics will compete with potentially
pathogenic bacteria for a space on the intestinal wall. The more probotics the less pathogenic bacteria
2) Having sufficient probiotics in the gut will work to do the following: When a virus is present in the gut (ie. Retorvirus), the probiotics will bind to that virus and inhibit its potential action and also prevent the virus from altering gene codes. Probiotics will also hinder the affects bacterial toxins. probiotics produce anti-microbial activity to ward off pathogenic bugs and fungi.
3) Probiotics enhance the function of the immune system. By doing this they shift T-helper cell balance to TH-1. This means that probiotics help decrease the possibility of potentially harmful diseases internally and topically (eczema). Probiotics will also enhance the production of gut IgA (antibody in the gut).
4) Probiotics produces beneficial substances in the gut.
*Short Chain Fatty Acids - give energy to coloncytes (cells of the colon)
*Polyamines - helps restore normal intestinal structure (from damage done from eating poorly causing leaky gut syndrome)
5) Anti-Inflammatory Activity: Probiotics do this by down-regulating (decrease their action) pro-inflammatory activities that alter gene encoding. Probiotics also up-regulate the substances that work to decrease inflammation (ie. cytokines).
6) Modify GI transit time: some probiotics decrease GI transit time (2 strains of bifidobacteria). Others will increase GI transit time (a strain of propionbacteria) it depending on the need of the individual.
7) Decrease Visceral Hypersensitivity as seen in diseases like IBS.
8) Some Strains can strengthen intestinal barrier: By increasing mucin (functions as lubrication of GI tract) production in the gut via increases in mucin gene expression-- provides a protective coating between the lumen and intestinal epithelial cells. This is also important factor of those suffering with leaky gut.
In conclusion, not all probiotics are the same! Not every supplement has the right probiotic strains. So, before you head to the drug store - STOP! Get a real nutritional consultation from a Doc that will give you specifically what your body needs.